Former volleyball head coach Kellen Mock has been released, the Department of Athletics announced earlier this month. On April 7, Athletic Director Jared Mosley made the announcement of the change in leadership after the team finished its first season of Div. I with a 6-18 record, losing 11 of its final 12 games of the season.
“We felt that with the move to Div. I and some of the challenges that come with that, this team needs a different style and someone who has different leadership strengths,” Mosley said. “We are always evaluating our coaches and staff and, not so much look at the wins and losses, but more of ‘are we moving in the right direction?'”
Mock declined to offer a statement on her release from the team.
The athletic department named assistant coach Ijeoma Moronu the interim head coach while it conducts a national search for a replacement. Moronu rejoined ACU as the assistant coach in June of 2013. As a player, Moronu is second all-time in assists with more than 4,800 and earned all-conference honors each of her four years. She also is one of the all-time leaders in blocks with 302.
“[Moronu] has done a great job with handling the team and leading the recruiting process,” Mosley said. “She knows the ACU culture and what kind of players we are looking for. I have the utmost faith in her.”
Mosley said he would like to have a new replacement ready to sign by next week.
“We’ve traveled all over the country looking at coaches from Div. I, Div. II, NAIA and other levels of competition to find the one person who we know will take this team where it needs to go,” Mosley said. “We are very close at this point and unless something surprises us, a decision should be made soon.”
Mock went a lifetime 154-97 over her eight years as head coach of the volleyball team. She is the third winningest coach in ACU history and her .715 winning percentage is second in school history. She helped lead the Wildcats to three NCAA Div. II South Central Region Tournaments in 2006, 2010 and 2011). In 2009, she led the Wildcats to a 29-6 record which is fourth best all-time ACU volleyball season schedule.
“Kellen Mock took this program to exceptional heights while she was here,” Mosley said. “But again, we evaluate every year to make sure we are moving in the right direction.”
The team has struggled though, as it registered an 18-37 record over the last two years. The Wildcats finished with a 2-12 conference record in its first year of Div. I play.
“We had a random meeting during our scheduled workout time, and Jared Mosely came in and told us [Mock] was no longer our head coach,” sophomore Jennifer Loerch said. “It was definitely a shock. I know there were some issues with her, but nobody thought she would actually get fired.”